Weekly Mixed Martial Arts & Kickboxing News – 04/06/2012
By PDG Staff
Bellator heads back to Raucous Casino Rama May 4th
With an already stellar main event featuring Bellator Lightweight Champion Michael Chandler taking on 32-win MMA veteran Akihiro Gono, Bellator 67 from Casino Rama will feature a welterweight semifinal showdown between Ben “Killa B” Saunders and Bryan “The Beast” Baker, as well as a host of stacked feature fights sure to get the Canadian faithful on their feet.
On the heels of his title-winning fight of the year performance against the world’s top lightweight Eddie Alvarez, Bellator Lightweight Champion Michael Chandler returns to face one of his greatest tests to date as the Las Vegas-trained fighter takes on former UFC lightweight Akihiro Gono.
After Chandler’s amazing fourth-round submission victory against then champion Eddie Alvarez at Bellator 58, the undefeated champion knows that he’s now the one with the target on his back.
“I’m just excited to get back into the cage,” Chandler said. “I fought four times in 2011 and I’m ready to get back to work. Gono has beaten some of the best fighters in the sport and this should be a good test for me.”
With 32 career wins, Gono has fought some of the world’s best. And with wins over reigning Bellator Middleweight Champion Hector Lombard and world-class middleweight Gegard Mousasi, Gono has beaten some of the world’s best. Known for jumping weight classes, Gono has a solid reputation of never turning down a fight, and he will have his hands full when he takes on Bellator’s Lightweight Champion on May 4.
Alistair Overeem Tests Positive for Elevated Levels of Testosterone
The UFC 146 main event that had fans drooling featuring UFC Champion Junior dos Santos versus K-1, DREAM & Strikeforce Champion Alistair Overeem is now in serious danger of not happening next month. Unless you have been hiding in a dark hole somewhere you heard this week that Overeem failed one of his pre-fight drug tests.
Since Overeem was not currently licensed to fight in Nevada he must be tested again or appear before the Nevada State Athletic Commission to apply for a license. Understandably, UFC President Dana White was furious upon hearing the news…
“I am beyond pissed about this, the worst part is that he sat in front of us and lied to us. How (expletive) stupid do you have to be? Seriously dumb. Anybody who’s using right now is an absolute (expletive) moron, it’s beyond, what’s the word I’m looking for, it’s beyond belief. It’s beyond comprehension. You’re an absolute moron, a brain dead absolute (expletive) dummy. It goes beyond a guy have any common sense whatsoever.”
Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier – Card Updated
The much-anticipated conclusion of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Tournament has been announced for Saturday, May 19, as Strikeforce returns to HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. Former UFC title holder Josh Barnett will meet two-time Olympic wrestler Daniel Cormier live on Showtime at 10 p.m. EST, to determine the eight-man tournament champion.
The fight card will also feature a rubber match for the Strikeforce lightweight championship between two long-time rivals when champion Gilbert Melendez defends his title against number one contender Josh Thomson. Additionally, former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Rafael ‘Feijão’ Cavalcante takes on the heavy-handed Mike Kyle and Bobby Voelker clashes with Nah-Shon Burrell in a welterweight tilt.
Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier
May 19, 2012
San Jose, California
Strike Force HW GP Finals:
Josh Barnett vs. Daniel Cormier
Strikeforce Lightweight Championship:
Gilbert Melendez vs. Josh Thomson
Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante vs. Mike Kyle
Gesias Cavalcante vs. Isaac Vallie-Flagg
James Terry vs. Billy Evangelista
Bobby Voelker vs. Naj-Shon Burrell
Gian Villante vs. Derrick Mehmen
Virgil Zwicker vs. Guto Inocente
Fedor Returns to the Ring on June 21st in St. Petersburg, Russia
Legendary Russian heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko (33-4) will fight in his home country for the second time in a row. This match will take place on the big M-1 Global tournament in Ice Palace, St. Petersburg. The name of Fedor’s opponent and other participants are yet to be announced.
UFC on FX 3 – Card Finalized
The Ultimate Fighting Championship and Harley-Davidson ride in to the BankAtlantic Center in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Friday, June 8 with an outstanding UFC event headlined by flyweight rivals Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson and Ian McCall. The winner of the fight will go on to fight Joseph Benavidez for the first-ever UFC 125-pound title later in the year.
Verbal agreements are now in for all of the bouts slated for the Harley-Davidson Hometown Throwdown, taking place Friday, June 8 in Ft. Lauderdale Florida. The main card will feature two welterweight bouts between known powerhouses. Brazilian striking sensation Erick Silva will meet ruthless wrestler Charlie Brenneman, while dynamic fan favorites Mike Pyle and Josh Neer will go to war.
Two more welterweight bouts may also find themselves on the main card. Mike Pierce, who’s long been lobbying for a fight against a Brazilian on Twitter, will get his wish as he faces Carlos Eduardo Rocha. Plus, TUF vet Seth Baczynski will face Lance Benoist, who last earned Fight of the Night honors for his three-round war with Matt Riddle. Fans can vote at ufc.com/hometownthrowdown for Pierce vs. Rocha, Baczynski vs. Benoist or the bantamweight matchup of Wineland vs. Jorgensen to air on the main card on FX.
Middleweight Buddy Roberts, whose scheduled fight in February was scrapped at the last minute when his opponent was injured warming up before the fight will make his overdue Octagon debut against Caio Magalhaes. Magalhaes has had a similarly strange road to the UFC: He took a short-notice fight at January’s UFC Rio when a fighter dropped out, only to then have his opponent also withdraw due to injury days before the bout.
In lightweight action, Tim Means will take on Justin Salas while Henry Martinez will face Bernardo Magalhaes. At welterweight, Canadian veteran Sean Pierson will meet Jake Hecht.
Nuts Magazine Becomes Official Media Partner of The MMA Show Live
UK Model Lucy Pinder To Attend and Meet Fans!
It has been confirmed that one of the UK’s leading men’s lifestyle brands, Nuts, has become an Official Media Partner of Europe’s biggest ever MMA fan expo, The MMA Show Live being held on May 12 -13 at The NEC in Birmingham.
Nuts magazine will have an exhibition stand at the show and will host four very special autograph sessions with one of the UK’s most well known glamour models, Lucy Pinder. In addition, Nuts readers will receive an exclusive discount on all weekend tickets by using the code featured on The MMA Show Live advert in the next issue of Nuts. The issue will be on shelves everywhere on Tuesday, April 10.
The MMA Show Live boasts a star studded lineup that includes the likes of BJ Penn, Dan Henderson, Rashad Evans, Michael Bisping, Brittney Palmer and Jake Shields, giving fans access to more top level UFC and MMA talent than any MMA show of its kind ever to be held in Europe.
Dominic Smith, editor of Nuts stated, “Mixed martial arts is one of the world’s fastest growing sports – and massively popular with the Nuts readership, so we’re delighted to be the MMA Show Live’s Official Media partner. It looks like being a fantastic event for all fans of MMA and Nuts is thrilled to be involved.”
The full schedule for the weekend was recently announced on www.themmashowlive.com which includes a PRIDE Retrospective on the main stage with Dan Henderson, Frank Trigg, Mark Coleman and Sokoudjou, and an Ultimate Fighter Retrospective with former TUF coach BJ Penn and TUF alums Matt Mitrione and Chris Leben.
The Ultimate Fighter 15 Live Finale Set with Ellenberger vs. Kampmann
The Ultimate Fighter Live Finale
Friday, June 1
Pearl at Palms Casino Resort
Las Vegas, Nevada
A new welterweight contender will emerge on Friday, June 1 at the Pearl at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas when rising stars Jake Ellenberger and Las Vegas resident Martin Kampmann lock horns in a pivotal five-round main event. Plus, a phenomenal season of The Ultimate Fighter Live will come to an end as the UFC crowns its next Ultimate Fighter with a six-figure contract to compete in the world’s premiere mixed martial arts organization. The event will air live on FX at 9:00 PM EST.
“The welterweight division is stacked and Jake Ellenberger and Martin Kampmann are going to fight for the chance to earn a title shot,” UFC President Dana White said. “They will headline the season finale of TUF Live on FX to crown the next Ultimate Fighter. There’s a lot at stake for the guys competing on this card at the Palms.”
SLAMM VII: Holland vs. Thailand
Holland vs. Thailand (5×3):
61kg: Ilias El Hajoui vs. Pornsaneh Sitmonchai
70kg: Mohamed Khamal vs. Saiyok Pumphanmuang
70kg: Faldir Chahbari vs. Bovy Sor Udomson
72.5kg: Nieky Holzken vs. Nonsai
Best of Holland (3×3):
57kg: Denise Kielholtz vs. Katerina Svobodova
70kg: Robbie Hageman vs. Ajay Balgobind
70kg: William Diender vs. Giga Chikadze
75kg: Miles Simson vs. Matthias Ibssa
80kg: Errol Koning vs. Omar Amrani
100+kg: Ismael Londt vs. TBA
The Le Banner Series Begins April 28th
The Jerome Le Banner Series begins April 28th and there will be four tournaments and four major fights at each tournament with each fight being five two-minute rounds.
Here are some of the Details:
* 4 nights of Boxing & K-1 heavyweight.
* A tournament of eight fighters in three acts.
* 1 Prestige Fight by surprise event with stars of K-1
* A world or European title by event
* 5 professional fights by night
* Greater intensity of fighting in rounds of 2 minutes
On completion of the first three Acts, the tournament winner will face Jerome Le Banner at a prestigious Gala – June 2013 – which will be the passing of the baton from one generation to another.
Duffee-Grove, Shlemenko-Minowa, Kelly-Ruediger at SFL 2
Boom. Pow. Punch Kick Wow! Super Fight League 2 is back this Saturday live from Chandigarh and once again fans from all over the world will be able to tune in and experience the action live and free on YouTube at 18.45 Indian Standard Time (IST) 06.15am PDT, 13.15 GMT on Saturday 7th April.
Duffee vs. Grove
Headlining the fight-card will be the SFL debut of one of the most explosive and exciting young heavyweights on the planet today, American Todd Duffee. Renowned within the MMA community for possessing the fastest KO in UFC history. Duffy’s appeal lies in a record that guarantees excitement; every fight he has ever been involved in has ended via knockout.
Up against Duffee is popular UK based South African Neil Grove, boasting an equally exciting record of all 11 wins coming via KO or TKO. Grove is counting on using experience to his advantage and is looking for the KO over Duffee. Both men will be looking to showcase their skills and make an impact with their SFL debuts in a classic crossroads fight.
Kelly vs. Healy
The big name fights do not stop there, as also on the card is Englishman Paul Kelly, a noted lightweight fighter famous for putting on exciting bouts thanks to his tenacity and kickboxing skills. A former three time winner of the UFC’s fight of the night award, Kelly specializes in enthralling the crowd. He will get every chance to do so against Ryan Healy. Healy, an aggressive fighter with 10 knockouts to his name is promising a superior ground game following an intensive camp with Team Quest.
Shlemenko vs. Minowa
Top ranked MW Alexander Shlemenko is 44-7 at only 27 years old and holds the record for career wins in Bellator. Currently riding a 7 fight win streak, this tough young fighter has a huge fan base in both Russia and Japan and is looking to make his mark against Japanese MMA legend Ikuhisa Minowa (“Minowaman”) Ikuhisa, a veteran of 93 bouts and winner of the DREAM “Super Hulk” Tournament is 7th all time in the history of the sport in wins. This bout will see two of the most experienced fighters in MMA go head to head in a match up that has fight of the night written all over it.
SFL CEO Ken Pavia (@KenPavia) said: “As a fight fan how can you not be excited about this card? Arguably the most athletic HW in the game is back in Todd Duffee. He’s taking on Neil Grove – all of Grove’s wins have come by finish inside of two rounds; expect fireworks.”
Pavia continued: “One of the biggest names in Russian MMA, Alexander Shlemenko, squares off against one of the biggest names in Japanese MMA. Shlemenko is 20-2 in his last 22 fights and holds the career record for most wins in Bellator history. Minowa has notable wins over Phil Baroni, Don Frye, Gilbert Yvel, and was the DREAM Super Hulk Champion. They have 97 wins between them. Paul Kelly returns after a year layoff to face the durable Ryan Healy in what promises to be a stand and bang affair. Once again this event can be viewed live and for free on YouTube and will be available on archive as well.”
Paul Kelly vs. Ryan Healy
Chaitanya Gavali vs. Pierre Daguzan
Bharat Kandare vs. Soro Ismael
Alexander Schlemenko vs. Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa
Anup Kumar vs. Dilanga Rathnaweera
Ricky Singh vs. Shalika Senanayake
Colleen Schneider vs. Cherie Buck
Todd Duffee vs. Neil Grove
K-1 Classic: Mirko Cro Cop vs. Bob Sapp – K-1 WGP 2003 in Saitama
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